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Interior: Rabbit in Hat - Nickname was “The Little Magician”
Martin Van Buren Curriculum Vitae
Presidential Number: 8th
Years President: 1837-1841
Party Affiliation: Democrat
Main Contenders: William Henry Harrison, Daniel Webster, Hugh Lawson
State Represented: New York
Birthday: December 5, 1782
Place of Birth: Kinderhook, New York
Higher Education: None
Prior Occupations: Lawyer, State Attorney General, U.S. Senator, Governor, Secretary of State, and Vice-President
Nickname: The Little Magician, The Red Fox of Kinderhook
Height: 5 feet, 6 inches
Favorite Food: Oysters, doughnuts, raisins, figs, and apples
Hobbies: Riding horses
Pets: Two tiger cubs (gift from Sultan of Oman)
Trivia: He and Jefferson only presidents that served as Secretary of State, Vice-President and President. First president born an American citizen (previous presidents started out as British subjects). First president of Dutch ancestry (he and his wife spoke Dutch at home). First to campaign like a contemporary politician – with speeches, rallies, and fundraisers. Known to be an impeccable dresser. As Vice President, presided over Senate with loaded pistols. The word "OK" credited to him (an abbreviation for the name of his New York home "Old Kinderhook”). Third cousin twice removed to Theodore Roosevelt.
Legacy: Key organizer of Democratic Party. Took office as booming economy of early and mid-1830s began to slow. The "Panic of 1837" was followed by the worst depression yet faced by the young nation. These economic troubles became his main concern. His response to the crisis revealed his belief in the principles of limited federal government and defense of states’ rights. Rejected the formation of a National Bank. Quieted talk of annexing Texas. Main foreign policy concern was growing tensions between U.S. and Great Britain about Canadian border. Ignored calls to respond to Canadian and British provocations with force, working successfully through diplomatic channels.